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Books Featuring Dragons

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Andy Shepherd’s Top 5 Dragon Books

Author Andy Shepherd picks out some of her own favourite books featuring dragons.

Andy says, ‘Ever since Puff, I’ve loved dragons. And of course I’m not alone. There is magic in dragons. And mystery. Which makes them perfect for readers and authors alike.

Whether it’s the fierce and majestic dragons found in Tolkien and J.K Rowling’s books or the gentler, kinder dragon in Kenneth Grahame’s The Reluctant Dragon, the rather demanding companion of Toothless, or the wonderful accident-prone Zog. There’s a dragon for everyone. But often dragons are found in fantastical worlds and I wanted that magic in everyday life. Because how cool would that be? To have a dragon in your house…to have a friend who could fly…

So my own twist on the dragon story was to ask, what if all dragons didn’t come from eggs, what if some of them grew on trees? And what if you were lucky enough to find a dragon-fruit tree in your garden and grow your very own dragon?

Then, I wonder what your dragon would be like?

There are so many books about dragons that I love, but here are some of my absolute favourites….’

Cressida Cowell
Chapter book
An absolute winner of a story and a brilliant choice for KS2 children in Year 4, 5 or 6. Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third is a smallish Viking with a longish name. Hiccup’s father is chief of the Hairy Hooligan tribe which means Hiccup is the Hope and the Heir to the Hairy Hooligan throne – but most of the time Hiccup feels like a very ordinary boy, finding it hard to be a Hero. In the first How to Train Your Dragon book, Hiccup must lead ten novices in their initiation into the Hairy Hooligan Tribe. They have to train their dragons or be banished from the tribe FOR EVER! But what if Hiccup’s dragon resembles an ickle brown bunny with wings? And has no teeth? The Seadragonus Giganticus Maximus is stirring and wants to devour every Viking on the Isle of Berk . . . Can Hiccup save the tribe – and become a Hero?
Helen Ward
 & Wayne Anderson
The perfect introduction to the legendary world of dragons, The Dragon Machine uses a clever mix of text and illustrations to describe how George, a young, overlooked boy, becomes aware of dragons hiding all around him. But when it becomes apparent that they don’t belong in George’s ordinary world, he endeavours to do the best for his new friends and find them the home they deserve. A heart-warming and magical tale from award-winning illustrator, Helen Ward.
Jackie Morris

This might actually be one of my favourite books of all time. Pictures and words come together and will be savoured and read time and again. If you love dragons – you will LOVE this. My sons and I got to tell endless stories about our own dragons and it’s a book we come back to even now they are much older.

Andy Shepherd
 & Sara Ogilvie
Chapter book

The first in a series, this hugely entertaining adventure about a small boy and his pet dragon would make a super read-aloud for lower KS2. Tomas is busy in the garden with Grandad, planning which fruits to grow that might be turned into delicious jams or tarts. When Tomas stumbles across a strange tree with curious-looking fruit, he never expects that what might emerge from the fruit is a real live dragon! This is an adventure that is humorous at every turn, but also full of heart. Tomas is a great positive role model for showing how young people can apply curiosity and creativity to the process of growing and nurturing plants and see ‘magic’ in the course.

Many thanks to Andy Shepherd for sharing these great suggestions with us.

Be inspired with ideas about using Andy Shepherd’s dragon series in classrooms by reading her guest blog post here.

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